Thursday, January 17, 2013

when and why i ignore my child

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i like to consider myself an attachment parent, which entails responding to my child's needs and emotions. 
 
but...
 
there are times when i just have to ignore him and not pay attention to his behavior.
 
why?
 
because i don't want him to learn that acting out, throwing a tantrum, breaking our family rules will get him attention.
 
instead, i praise him for positive actions, behavior, and choices. 
 
there are times that he gets awnry because he wants affection from me.  and as much as i just want to swoop him up and love on him, i can't.  i don't respond negatively or discipline him for this attention-seeking behavior.  instead i tell him what the appropriate way to get what he wants. 
 
the reason?
 
i don't want him to equate using hurtful or mean words/actions with obtaining love and affection.  i think that it only begets relationship problems in the future.
 
why am i making this admission?
 
to emphasize that if you ignore negative behavior, you're not necessarily a bad parent. and to provide you with support when/if you've had to defend your parenting choices and criticism from others.
 
now that i've said all this, i have to say...
 
though i do support ignoring your child's negative behaviors at times, i do not think it is okay, nor do i suggest ignoring any behaviors that endanger the child or others, are abusive, or damage property.  please use your discretion. 
 
again, there are times i ignore my child...but i feel that sometimes it is necessary to not reinforce those behaviors.
 
 
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11 comments:

maryanne @ mama smiles said...

I agree.

Gina said...

Makes perfect sense to me!

Katherine (Aurora Spitfire) said...

It's good to hear this from other parents, as I'm working really hard to ignore my almost-three-year-old's negative behaviors. Sometimes it's just. so. very. HARD!!

Jennifer said...

Thank you for posting this, Andie! I hate the feeling that many moms put on such a good face, almost pretending they don't do all of the things we all do! I sometimes pretend I am going to leave so my daughter will come along. ; )

Jennifer said...

PS Hope you are well and enjoyed the holidays!!

Shaunna @ Fantastic Fun and Learning said...

Well said! I learned very early in my teaching career that you will definitely see more of the behavior that you recognize. Instead of focusing on correcting and essentially nagging the kids who were not doing the right thing, I focused on recognizing and giving attention to the kids making good choices. It made a huge difference in my classroom, and now it is really helpful as a mom.

Julie Rogers said...

Totally get this post:)

Julie
www.thechirpingmoms.com

Michelle @ Delicate Construction said...

I could not agree more!! After teaching and working with kids for almost 10 years and living it with a toddler of my own, you notice patterns and this is definitely one of them! Children seek attention, it is in their nature and they really don't discriminate or mind if it is negative or positive. They just want it, if they get more attention for negative behavior and they find that is what works, that is what they will do.
Great post girl, great post!

Kali J. Drane said...

Perfect!

mysterygarden said...

Found this via Pinterest, though I was hoping for more specific information, concrete examples, explain the behavior and then the why...

Mums make lists said...

Totally with you on this one - do think it's a really important part of reinforcing positive behaviour.

I would love for you to link it - and your other positive parenting posts - up at Empty Your Archive link party - there is a special focus this week on positive behaviour, Alice @ Mums Make Lists x

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